Weather, Climate & Human Systems Lab
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About the Lab

Human well-being is intrinsically tied to the environment and is particularly sensitive to weather and climate. These influences can be seen on a daily basis as the local weather forecast informs our choices of what to wear and what activities to engage in. Less trivially, phenomena such as tropical cyclones can destroy cities and severe droughts can cripple economies and destabilize entire political systems. In addition to weather and climate impacting society, humans now have a first order influence on weather and climate via emissions of greenhouse gasses and other pollutants. These two-way interactions influence each other via a myriad of complex pathways.

The Weather, Climate and Human Systems Lab under the department of Meteorology and Climate Science at San José State University takes a holistic, interdisciplinary approach to studying the interactions between society and the earth system. In particular we investigate how the atmosphere, ocean, land, and economic structures interrelate in multifaceted, multidirectional, nonlinear ways. Our research extends from the purely physical sciences to studies that include a significant social science aspect and it spans spatiotemporal scales from daily and regional to centennial and global.

The lab is run by Dr. Patrick T. Brown, Assistant Professor in the department of Meteorology and Climate Science at San José State University. If you are a motivated student who has studied (or is studying) mathematics, computer science, data science, engineering, meteorology, ocean science, earth science, environmental science or a related field and are interested in partaking in impactful research (as well as gaining marketable technical analysis and communication skills), please contact Patrick (patrick.brown at regarding the pursuit of a Master’s degree in our lab. See the tab above for a list of potential research projects.


San José and San José State University  

Founded in 1857, San José State University is the oldest public university in California. It is located in downtown San José, the 10th largest city in the United States and the southern node of the San Francisco Bay area. The city of San José is known as “The Capital of Silicon Valley” and San José State’s motto is “Powering Silicon Valley”. This is for good reason, as San José State is the only public university in Silicon Valley and San José State alumni are among the most represented in Silicon Valley tech firms. San José State is also adjacent to other high-caliber institutions of science – Stanford University, Lawrence Livermore National Lab, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, NASA Ames Research Center – allowing for easy collaborations with other world-class scientists.

The coming years will be exciting times for downtown San José, as the Google Village, a 240 acre development projected to host ~20,000 Google employees, is scheduled to begin construction. It is also an exciting time for science at San José State as the school will soon begin construction on a state of the art interdisciplinary science building.